What a week! When life gets crazy-busy, a good system keeps me from going under.
Today I’ll be sharing the simple ten-minute system I set up to organise the paperwork the kids bring home from school, sports clubs, daycare… and everywhere else.
Yep, that’s right – it will only take you ten minutes to set this up!
But before we dive in, I feel like we need a catch-up! I’ve been quiet on the blog this year, and I want to touch base and fill you in on what’s been going on.
I mentioned last year that I’d be going back to teaching this year.
A lot of people have asked if that means I’ll be giving up blogging. The answer is no! I’m not going anywhere. 😊
I’ve chosen to do supply (substitute) teaching, which I think will work well. It’s flexible, there’s no take-home work (which is good because I don’t have time at home for extra work on top of blogging!) and if I don’t get called in, I’ll be able to work from home on the blog. It means I’ll be able to keep A house full of sunshine running as well as bring in the extra income we need for our family.
Having said that, as of Monday I’ll be starting a 6-week contract to fill in for a teacher who’ll be off work following an operation, so I’ll be at work 4 days per week for the next little while. March is shaping up to be a busy month – nothing like diving straight into the deep end!
Apart from some teacher inservice days, last week marked my first official day back at work in six years. It felt very daunting and exciting all at once.
A lot has changed since I left, and there’s been quite a learning curve to get my head around the new tech systems they’re using in the classrooms now. But I really enjoyed the actual teaching. I guess it’s kind of like riding a bike. I slipped back into the role so comfortably it was like I’d never left.
I mentioned that it’s been quite a week. I’ve also been working on a VERY tight decorating deadline for our church. They recently took over the lease on a new building, and managed to secure council approval to renovate right before the lease ran up on their old venue. So everyone has pitched in to build, paint, clean, install, and fix, to get the entire building ready in time for the first service there on Sunday just gone. And let’s just say, it needed a LOT of work.
As the designated designer, I had about a week to choose all the new paint colours, as well as furniture and décor for the café area, parents’ room, and kids’ room. It was a lot of furniture to choose on a very tight budget (which meant a heap more searching to source items at the right price point) and in a very short timeframe.
It’s been great fun, but the deadline has certainly also been stressful. There’ve been a few nights I had to stay up till midnight to get all the sourcing done in time. Measuring and painting has been squeezed in around toddler naptimes, kids activities and blog deadlines. And honestly, that’s nothing compared to what so many others have done. A crew of church members have been at the building around the clock working themselves ragged to get it all done in time. It’s been really cool watching the body of Christ function in their abilities and giftings to work together as a team and pull off a massive project like this under the pump.
To add to all that, my husband’s biggest work project to date launched to market last week – it’s a high rise that I’ve also been involved with in design and decor – so he’s been absent a lot as he’s had to work a heap of extra hours surrounding the launch.
Oh, and of course I launched my Kids. Sorted printable pack, which has involved a whole bunch of extra time commitment as well.
Add in all the usual stuff of life with four kids – my son’s birthday last week, cricket, ballet, dentist appointments, etc, and it’s been a juggle, to say the least.
All that to say, I think I would go crazy if I didn’t have some simple systems to help me deal with the everyday-life-stuff.
If you haven’t taken a look at “Kids Sorted” yet, I know you’re going to love it! It’s a Mega Resource Pack filled with practical, solution-focussed printables to ease your toughest organising struggles with kids. Oh, and the printables are all fun, colourful and super cute too.
You can see EVERYTHING that’s inside by clicking on the graphic below!
So now that I’ve caught you up a bit on what’s been going on in my world, let’s get back to paperwork!
A lot of paperwork can be eliminated simply by writing down the details as soon as it comes into your home, and then tossing the piece of paper.
But sometimes there’s too much to write down, or it may be information you’ll need to refer back to in future.
If you don’t have an allocated place to put papers like this, they can end up cluttering your counter or being shoved in a drawer, and chances are you won’t be able to find the information when you actually need it.
That’s why I decided to set up a simple binder system, divided into categories.
I used the cute set of binder cover printables available in the Kids Sorted pack. This is entirely optional, but does help make your system pretty and fun to use.
Start by printing out the covers you need. There are heaps of categories available in the pack.
Glue the cover sheets to the front of each tabbed divider.
Use a label-maker to label each category on the tabs.
I like to use clear labelling tape for tasks like this – it looks neat and minimal, almost as if you’ve typed directly onto the tabs.
And that’s it! All that’s left to do is to add plastic sheet protectors so your folder is ready to file paperwork as soon as it arrives in your home.
I like to keep the binder handy in my command centre, which is where we drop keys, mail and paperwork as it comes into our home. It only takes 3 extra seconds to file the paperwork neatly in the binder, and it means when we need that information, it is right there at our fingertips.
Sometimes the simple solutions really are the best. I hope this has inspired you to set up your own binder for kids paperwork!
If this almost seems TOO simple, I want to encourage you that getting organised is often not the big, daunting task we make it out to be in our heads.
Getting organised is really just about addressing one little niggly area of your home and life at a time, and putting a simple system in place to help it function more smoothly.
Each task on its own might not seem like much, but every little bit adds up.
And the sum of those simple little systems is an organised and efficient life.
If this makes sense to you, but you don’t quite know where to begin, I invite you to take the 14-Day “Kids Sorted” Challenge. Over 14 days we’ll complete a series of small tasks (just like this one!) to address common problem areas that parents struggle with when it comes to getting organised with their kids.
Just click the image below to learn more and sign up for the challenge!
We use a different system to organise kids’ artworks and school memorabilia. More on that in another post. (Or you can find out sooner by taking the challenge – it’s all covered in there!)
Let me know in the comments – how do you organise your kids’ paperwork? Any tips for me as I transition from work-at-home mum to work-at-work-and-also-work-at-home mum? Ha! I’ll need all the good ideas I can get for juggling two jobs + family life!